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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage

16 January 2001

NEW LABEL DRIVES MARKET FOR FUEL EFFICIENCY


All passenger vehicles sold in Australia must now display a new label listing fuel consumption data.

Announcing the initiative today, Environment Minister Robert Hill and Acting Minister for Transport and Regional Services Ian Macdonald said the labels would give consumers an informed choice when they bought a new car.

The compulsory new label states fuel consumption in litres per 100 km, allowing comparisons between different makes and models. The lower the number listed on the label, the less petrol the car uses.

"This labelling system will give consumers a reliable tool to compare fuel performance when they choose a new car. A reduction in fuel consumption of 1 L/100km could save consumers about $135 each year," Senator Hill said today at the official launch of the labelling scheme at Mitsubishi in Adelaide.

"Choosing a fuel efficient car will also help the environment - every litre of petrol used releases about 2.3kg of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere."

The label is model specific and required under a new Australian Design Rule (ADR) 81/00 Fuel Consumption Labelling for Light Vehicles, administered by the Commonwealth Department of Transport and Regional Services.

Senator Macdonald said the design rule came into effect on January 1 and required all new vehicles up to 2.7 tonnes - including passenger vehicles, four-wheel-drives and light commercials sold in Australia to display the fuel consumption label on the windscreen at the point of sale.

"Consumer purchasing power will help drive a competitive market for fuel-efficient vehicles in Australia," Senator Macdonald said.

"Not only will the environment benefit, but also the hip pocket of ordinary Australians."

Speaking from the Mitsubishi production line, Senator Hill urged the automotive industry to intensify its efforts to improve the fuel consumption of new model cars.

He said this would help reduce Australia's national fuel consumption and thereby reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.

Australian transport accounts for about 16 per cent of national greenhouse gas emissions and they are growing rapidly.

Senator Hill predicted the labelling scheme would prevent about 800,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions between 2001 and 2010 by increasing the sale of more efficient vehicles.

"The labelling scheme is one of several Government initiatives that will assist in meeting our international greenhouse gas abatement commitments," Senator Hill said.

Brochures on the new labelling scheme will be available in new vehicle showrooms with information published at www.greenhouse.gov.au/fuellabel.

Tuesday, January 16

Media inquiries:
Belinda Huppatz (Senator Hill's office) 08 82377920 or 0419 258364
Carol Bartley (Australian Greenhouse Office) 02 6274 1859 or 0412 994 800
Robert Reid (Senator Macdonald's office) 02 6277 7060

Commonwealth of Australia